1. Be careful when it comes to the online stores that you consider buying from. If the web store is poorly designed, full of misspellings, and overall fishy, you should take your money elsewhere. These are signs that something might not be right about this store. It's safer to be safe than sorry.
2. Get familiar with the shipping facts of an online retailer. Their shipping policy should be outlined in a separate section to illustrate the average time you should get your items, geographic restrictions, shipping choices, possible shipping insurance, and what their shipping and handling fees are. Use this all information to choose if these costs and options fit well to suit your needs, your budget, and your area before you place an order.
3. When a company has a newsletter, sign-up. Often, companies will give sneak peeks, promotions and discount codes to people on their own mailing list. However, be careful. You don't want to sign up for every company's newsletter or you'll soon be buried under endless emails. Only subscribe to a company's newsletter if you really like their goods and would use a coupon code.
4. Always save copies of your orders and receipts from online purchases. Many stores will redirect you to a page after you've submitted a purchase detailing exactly what was bought, customer information, the prices, etc. You should either print a duplicate of this or save a copy to your computer in case any issues arise before the end of the return period. Make sure to save any emails regarding your items' status or correspondence with the company regarding your orders, too.
5. Sign-up for any identity fraud protection your credit card company offers, specifically if you shop online often. No matter how safe you are or how diligently you believe it is possible to protect your data, it's never one hundred percent guaranteed. Take full advantage of automatic ID protection and know you will have back-up, should the worst occur.